Oil Drillers' Burning of Natural Gas Costs U.S. Millions in Revenue

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Oil Drillers' Burning of Natural Gas Costs U.S. Millions in Revenue

New report highlights loss to taxpayers from gas wasted on public land.
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Thursday, May 22, 2014 - 3:45pm

In oil-rich North Dakota, gas flares dot the landscape like city lights, torching natural gas that the industry won't use. The burning flares are a hallmark of a booming U.S. oil industry in which natural gas, a valuable energy source itself, often becomes a waste byproduct of drilling.

Now, the cost of flaring—in lost energy resources and potential revenue from federal land in North Dakota and other western states—is increasingly drawing the attention of government officials and interest groups.

A new report released by the Western Values Project (WVP), a nonprofit focused on sustainable land development, estimates that the federal royalties lost from U.S. gas flaring amounted to more than $50 million in 2013. That lost gas could have powered all the homes in Chicago for a year, according to the report.

Continue reading on The Great Energy Challenge.

Keywords: Energy | Bureau of Land Management | Energy | Environment | Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) | Flaring | National Geographic | North Dakota | The Great Energy Challenge | natural gas | oil

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